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Parenting

Attention parents! You are under surveillance!

Got baffled by the title?? But yes, this is a fact. Your kids are watching you day and night. You may call your child ten times,  your kid may not respond and may seem engrossed in something. But you start talking with your husband or with your friend and you will find that their antenna is always directed towards you. If you are talking about the kids then they will not miss even a single word.

You try to sit comfortably and discuss something with your husband and I am ready to bet if your kid doesn’t come running towards you and occupy space between you and your husband. 

Once my kid was spending his vacation with his grandparents. After couple of days I received a call from my mother in law (MIL) asking whether we had a fight regarding who should clean the kitchen platform in the night. I was more embarrassed than surprised by this question. She narrated the afternoon’s incident. That day the kids were playing “Mummy Daddy” game. My kid was acting as the Daddy and our neighbour’s daughter was acting as the Mummy. During this role play the Daddy asked Mummy to clean the kitchen platform and the Mummy readily agreed. Now the little Daddy gave instructions to the Mummy, “Hey how come you readily agreed to clean kitchen platform?? You should say that it’s your turn to do it today and fight” My wizened MIL had guessed what must have happened and had called me. Plus I got a free advice that we should not fight in front of the kiddo. All I remember is my kid was engrossed in watching cartoons in other room when we were fighting. I am sure even you would have experienced similar thing.

I remember when I was a kid my mother used to have her college in the early morning (she was a teacher). She used to finish cooking and other chores before her college. She used to be in great hurry. If we sisters wouldn’t follow discipline she used to scold us. She used to get delayed. But I used to feel what’s there to scold us for such a small thing. When I would grow up I wouldn’t lose my temper by such a small thing. But alas! That’s not the case. When placed in similar circumstances unknowingly my reactions are exactly same as my mother and not what I always envisaged.

In my office it was normal for people to distribute chocolates on their birthdays. All the kids love chocolates. So did my kiddo. So used to bring those chocolates home and share with my kiddo. After few days I realised whenever kids used to distribute chocolates in his school he started bringing them home. He used open then only after I came home. Or when he used to fall sick I used to check his temperature after every 2-3 hours. Now when I fall sick he does the same without anyone telling him anything!

Jokes apart, but parents we are seriously being watched 24*7. Our kids are going to immitate us in similar circumstances. Our advices may not work. Actions speak louder than words.  Kids learn more by watching our behavior than what we tell them. We are the role model to our kids. I would like to conclude by saying be the man you want your child to become!

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Categories
Parenting

Making kids understand value of money! – Part 2

Read Part 1

In last blog we read that my son wanted a Nerf gun. Giving Nerf gun was not a big deal for me but making my kid understand the value of money was very important. I had found the solution to this problem. I had suggested my son to buy the gun with his hard earned money. Read on to know how.

Me: That’s easy enough. I will give you a deal. If you like it then you can accept it. Why don’t you iron your own clothes? I pay outside laundry-man at the rate of Rs 6 per cloth. I will pay you at the same rate for the clothes you have ironed during the month. We can maintain a diary and note number clothes ironed on each day.

Son: But I don’t know how to iron clothes. 

Me: Oh! It’s not at all difficult dear. Me and your father would teach you how to iron.

Son: But what if I iron the clothes, earn the money and you refuse to buy whatever I say. 

Me: That’s a promise. I will not refuse or detain you from buying whatever you like. If I feel something is not appropriate as a mother I will tell you my opinion. But the final decision will be yours and it will be binding on me and as well as on your father.

I interlocked little finger of my right hand into little finger of his right hand. That was a gesture of promise which cannot be broken by either of the parties. This was sufficient to convince my son. But I was not done yet. I also told him one more condition that I would not hand over the cash to him. We would accompany him wherever he wanted to go for shopping and we would pay directly to shopkeeper. I had put this condition for 2 reasons. First, he shouldn’t carry money in school for showing off among his friends and fall victim to some untoward incident. Second to maintain transperancy. It shouldn’t so happen that we have disallowed something and he spends money on such things without our knowledge. We had full trust in our son but at such young age taking due precaution was our responsibility as parents. Let the kids venture far but not too far.

My son understood the full scheme. He was not too sure about whether he should go for it or not. Next 2-3 weeks went by without mentioning either of the Nerf gun or ironing. One Saturday my son declared that he was ok with my proposal and wanted to learn ironing. We immediately got a brand new Murphy Richards iron. My husband taught him how to lay table for ironing, how to adjust the temperature of the iron depending on material of the cloth and finally how to iron different types of clothes. We advised him to iron his clothes under our supervision only. We had to help him initially in turning the clothes and folding them. But in short time he mastered the art. He was now eagerly waiting for first pay day.

Follow my blog to know whether my son would be able to buy his beloved the Nerf gun with his hard earned money. (To be continued..)

Categories
Parenting

Making kids understand value of money ! – Part 1

When we were kids we didn’t have so many toys and resources and yet we were so happy. Today’s kids have plenty many toys and still they always look dissatisfied with their lot. They always keep on demanding something more.

My son had turned 11. He had many toy guns. But now he wanted to own a Nerf gun. I knew that his enthusiasm for any new toy including this Nerf gun would remain for 2-3 days and then the toy would lie in some forgotten corner of the house for ages. So I was not very keen on buying the same. My past experience had taught me that outright denial leads to lot of dissatisfaction and opens up endless string of arguments. I wanted to avoid this scene but at the same time I wanted my son to understand the value money. 

But how to do it?? It was easily said than done.  I wanted some time to think. So when my son demanded Nerf gun I just gave him non-committal answer, “Let’s see”. Thereafter I was thinking on it for couple of days. One really does not appreciate the efforts required for earning money unless he himself has earned money. Oh yes! Eureka!! I found the solution. Now I needed to talk to my son. I called him and told him.

Me: You wanted a Nerf gun right?

Son: Yes.

Me: See you already have 2-3 guns. So I don’t feel like buying another gun for you. But still if you really want Nerf gun then you can purchase it with your own hard earned money.

Son: Hard earned money? What do you mean by hard earned money?? 

I had to be very careful while defining this term because my son had earned decent amount of prize money. Plus he was favorite of all and used to get gift money from family and friends on various occasions. 
Me: It means money earned by doing some real work. It will not include prize money or gift money that you have received.

Son: It will not include prize money or gift money?? Then how am I supposed to earn money Mamma? It’s impossible. (He looked little disheartened)

Me: That’s easy enough. I will give you a deal. If you like it then you can accept it. 

My son was listening with all attention. If I had proposed something then I had to show him practical way of achieving the same also. I had found out a solution which was “Win Win” situation for me. If he would accept my proposal he would learn a new life skill which would be useful to him throughout his life and plus learn the value of money. If he would not  accept my solution I would not purchase this Nerf gun also.

Stay tuned to find out what this solution was and whether my son accepted my proposal. (To be continued…)

To read my other blogs please click on https://motherlab.blogspot.com